2.4 min readBy Published On: June 27th, 2017Categories: News0 Comments on Devoted BAC Racquetball players to Keep one Court

There’s a die hard group of racquetball players (affectionately referred to as “wallbangers”) who have enjoyed a long and storied sporting life on the Boston Athletic Club’s racquetball courts. So, you can imagine their surprise and frustration last February when they received just one month’s notice that the courts were being renovated and not necessarily restored.

From a recent Boston Globe article:  “According to the BAC, the plan, detailed in a Feb. 2 letter to members, called for closing the club’s racquetball and squash courts, leasing away the section of the club known as the field house to neighboring Verizon, and tearing down the courts. That would mean more room for the fitness center’s weights and machines, and for something called ERG Performance Training.”

“I was stunned and quite pissed off,” sat Pat Kineavy, a longtime player who frequented the courts 3-4 times a week. “I rely on the sport and the close access from my home to keep me fit and motivated. I started racquetball when I got sober, so it is near and dear to me on many levels,” he added.

Buzz on the street is that the BAC could make more money utilizing the space to offer the latest and greatest in fitness classes, and that the real motivator is that Verizon, which rents space next to the BAC, would lease space from the BAC for top dollar.

“We were fortunate enough to reach out to Nick Collins and see if he could get to the bottom of it,” explains Kineavy. “Nick jumped in and was able to secure one court for us, even though that is really not enough when we are going from 6 courts down to one. We all acknowledge that the sport is not ‘hip’ with the younger people moving to Southie, but as long-time members we were hopeful that our needs would be considered,” he added.

Representative Collins offered in an email: “”This is a good example of business and government coming together for the benefit of the community. I am pleased that we found a solution that will ensure racquetball and handball will have a permanent home in South Boston including a new state of the art indoor facility at the L Street Bathouse, to be built as part of the upcoming renovation and supported by Pappas Enterprises.”

When emailed a request for a comment, BAC General Manager Jay Herson emailed: “We do not have any announcements to make at this time…….we’re hoping to update the membership in the very near future.”

Larry Rasky, who represents Pappas Enterprises which owns the BAC property, said in an email that “one court will remain open during renovations and one will remain post renovations.”

However, according to Kineavy there are no courts open for use at the present time.

Stay tuned! 


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